Num­ber of for­eign work­ers in re­gion triples

Sun.Star Cebu - - TOP STORIES - / EOB

A to­tal of 2,432 for­eign­ers worked in Cen­tral Visayas, par­tic­u­larly in Cebu, as of last Novem­ber. They are in posses­sion of an Alien Em­ploy­ment Per­mit (AEP) is­sued by the Depart­ment of La­bor and Em­ploy­ment (Dole) 7.

Last year, the num­ber of AEP hold­ers was much lower at 839, ac­cord­ing to Dole 7 Director John­son Cañete.

The for­eign­ers are com­posed of dif­fer­ent na­tion­al­i­ties, such as Chi­nese, Kore­ans, Ja­panese, In­di­ans, Tai­wanese, Amer­i­cans, Dan­ish, Pak­ista­nis, Aus­tralians, French, Malaysians, Viet­namese, Span­ish, Rus­sians and Is­raelis.

Cañete said the Chi­nese make up the high­est num­ber of for­eign work­ers in the re­gion. Their num­ber rose from 81 to 1,301 fol­low­ing Pres­i­dent Ro­drigo Duterte’s three vis­its to the Peo­ple’s Repub­lic of China since he took of­fice in Mala­cañang in July 2016.

The rapid in­crease in the num­ber of Chi­nese work­ers has at­tracted at­ten­tion amid grow­ing con­cerns that Chi­nese na­tion­als are tak­ing over com­pa­nies in the Philip­pines.

Most of the Chi­nese na­tion­als who pos­sess an AEP work at a busi­ness process out­sourc­ing firm at New­town in Barangay Mac­tan, Lapu-Lapu City.

The re­quire­ments for an AEP in­clude an ac­com­plished and no­ta­rized ap­pli­ca­tion form, pho­to­copy of pass­port with visa and present orig­i­nal cer­tifi­cate of recog­ni­tion for refugees or state­less per­sons, orig­i­nal copy of con­tract of em­ploy­ment, pho­to­copy of em­ployer’s cer­tifi­cate of regis­tra­tion from the Depart­ment of Trade and In­dus­try or Se­cu­ri­ties and Ex­change Com­mis­sion, pho­to­copy of mayor’s per­mit to op­er­ate the busi­ness, two 2×2 ID pic­tures with white back­ground and proof of tax iden­ti­fi­ca­tion num­ber.

“We grant AEPs to ap­pli­cants after their em­ploy­ers are able to jus­tify the need for these work­ers who can speak their lan­guage,” Cañete said.

He said the ap­pli­ca­tion is also pub­lished in the news­pa­per so that if there are valid com­plaints against the AEP ap­pli­cant, Dole will dis­ap­prove the ap­pli­ca­tion.

“We can­not al­low for­eign­ers to work in fields where Filipinos are ca­pa­ble and avail­able. That’s why we pub­lish the ap­pli­ca­tion for AEP first be­fore we ap­prove it,” Cañete said.

Ac­cord­ing to the director, 16 ap­pli­cants were de­nied an AEP for not hav­ing the com­plete re­quire­ments this year.

Mean­while, Gen­eral Man­ager Steve Dicdi­can of the Mac­tan-Cebu In­ter­na­tional Air­port Au­thor­ity said South Kore­ans make up the high­est num­ber of for­eign ar­rivals in Cebu, fol­lowed by the Chi­nese, Ja­panese and Amer­i­cans.

SUN­STAR FILE

A FRIENDLY IN­VA­SION? The num­ber of Chi­nese tourists and work­ers in Cen­tral Visayas, par­tic­u­larly Cebu, has bal­looned fol­low­ing Pres­i­dent Ro­drigo Duterte’s three vis­its to the Peo­ple’s Repub­lic of China since he took of­fice in 2016.

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